Safe Work Australia has just released its "Notable Fatalities Monthly Report" for September 2013, which contains some much-needed facts and figures about the state of WHS in our country.

Overall, there were 14 work-related fatalities in September. A total of eight male employees were killed, along with one female and five male bystanders.

The report shows that three people died as a result of vehicle incidents, both on public and non-public roads, while two people lost their lives after falling from height.

The remaining fatalities occurred when people were trapped in machinery; hit by vehicles, moving or falling objects; electrocuted; or suffered insect bites and stings.

While some industries are clearly more dangerous than others, as the "Notable Fatalities Monthly Report" shows, it's interesting that the top five industries featured on the list are widely different. These are: transport, agriculture, construction, public administration and safety, and manufacturing.

This demonstrates that no matter which industries you're working in or what tasks you're performing, following the necessary WHS procedures is paramount – it could mean the difference between life and death.

The following is a quick run-down of Down Under's most deadly industries, according to the number of fatalities noted in Safe Work Australia's report.

Transport

The transport sector is by far and away the most dangerous in Australia, with a shocking 51 work-related fatalities recorded in the year to September 2013. In the month of September alone, 5 people lost their lives in the transport sector. A total of 23 workers and 28 bystanders were killed.

Nevertheless, this industry plays a vital role in our country's economy and is a huge employer – some estimates put its workforce at 1.2 million people. Australia will always need skilled people to work in the transport sector, so it's important they know how to look after themselves.

What can you do to keep safe?

AlertForce offers a wide range of training courses that are designed for those working in the transport sector. Our Dangerous Goods Training, for example, will provide you with the know-how to transport materials such as acids, paints, gases and pesticides by sea or air.

We also have Forklift Safety Training and Load Restraint Training. The former course will teach you everything you need to know about operating a forklift, such as moving loads and parking, as well as how to navigate your working environment safely.

The latter will show you how to choose the right vehicle for whatever you're attempting to transport and how to arrange and restrain loads according to best practice.

Agriculture

Unsurprisingly, the agriculture sector is high on Safe Work Australia's list of work-related fatalities, coming in second place. In the year to September 2013, a total of 33 people in this industry died.

In contrast to the transport sector, it's the workers themselves rather than the bystanders in this industry that are most at risk – 32 out of the 33 people who were killed last year were workers.

This industry employs around 1.6 million people (both directly and indirectly) across the country. It also injects approximately $49 billion into the Australian economy each year.

The biggest hazard facing workers in the agriculture sector is vehicles. These vehicles – which include tractors and quad bikes – are responsible for almost three-quarters of the work-related fatalities recorded in this industry.

While steps have been taken by many groups, such as FarmSafe Australia, to address the issue, there is – as always – more work to be done.

What can you do to keep safe?

AlertForce's Injury and Illness Training is just one of the courses that you and your workers could benefit from. This covers a variety of health conditions including poisoning and stings, hypothermia, fainting, heart attacks and heat-related illnesses.

Construction

The third most dangerous industry in terms of fatalities is the construction sector. While the number of workers and bystanders who have lost their lives in this industry is much lower than those recorded in the transport and agriculture sectors, one death – as the saying goes – is still too many.

A total of 19 people were killed in the construction sector in the year to September 2013. Again, the majority of these were workers – 15 in all – while the remaining 4 were bystanders.

According to WorkSafe Victoria, a whopping 50 construction workers are seriously injured in the state each week – usually because "basic site safety is not up to scratch," a spokesperson revealed. In a sector that's one of the fastest growing in the state and employs 225,000 workers, this statistic must not be ignored.

What can you do to keep safe?

At AlertForce, WHS that relates to the construction sector is one of our strengths. From general Construction Safety Training that equips workers with the skills they need to identify, assess and manage hazards that may crop up on site, to specialised courses, such as Lockout Tagout Training, AlertForce can help your employees get home safe at the end of each working day!

Public Administration and Safety

In fourth place is the public administration and safety sector with eight deaths (six workers and two bystanders). This covers a wide range of professions, such as security officers, lifeguards and probation officers.

What can you do to keep safe?

AlertForce offers a First Aid Training Course, which is the cornerstone of all WHS. This is an online "refresher" course that is perfect for those who are looking to brush up on their knowledge and skills in this area.

Manufacturing

While the manufacturing sector is leading the way when it comes to research and development (apparently one-quarter of all business expenditure went toward this in 2012-13), it's also one of the frontrunners when it comes to work-related fatalities.

With a total of seven deaths in the year to September 2013, the manufacturing sector earns its spot as the fifth most dangerous sector in the country. All seven of the people who died during this 12-month period were workers – no bystanders lost their lives.

The Department of Industry reveals that, as of the September quarter, an impressive 921,400 people were employed in the manufacturing sector. Like the other industries discussed in this article, it is also a massive contributor to our country's economy, raking in an estimated $105 billion in 2012-13.

What can you do to keep safe?

One of the AlertForce courses you might want to consider enrolling your workers in is Hand Safety Training.

This will cover a useful array of topics, including how to operate machinery in a safe way, how to adopt the right grip (so your workers aren't crippled by repetitive hand strains), how to use gloves and the steps you can take to avoid hand injuries in the working environment.

This is just the tip of the iceberg – AlertForce's WHS courses are suitable for almost every sector – no matter how dangerous. Get in touch with our team today to help make sure you're safe and healthy at work tomorrow!